The Phoenix Suns triumph over the LA Clippers in a 4-1 series win



Kawhi Leonard (Right) guards Devin Booker (Left) during game two of the NBA Playoffs.

Gerardo Deanda, General Staff Reporter

The NBA Playoff series between the Phoenix Suns and the LA Clippers was one of the closest and most intense playoff series so far. The fourth-seeded Suns faced the fifth-seeded Clippers in round one of the playoffs. 

Game one was played at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Ariz. on April 15. Unfortunately for the Clippers, a vital piece of their offensive engine was unable to play in game one. Paul George was injured in March and suffered a leg injury. George was then ruled out for the entire series. 

Nonetheless, the Clippers played extremely well against the Suns in game one, beating them 115 to 110. Their most valuable player, Kawhi Leonard, ended the game with 38 points, five rebounds, and five assists. 

Kawhi is known for his excellent playoff performance and did not disappoint in the first game. On the Suns’ side, their best player, Kevin Durant, ended the night with 27 points, nine rebounds, and 11 assists. Following close behind was Devin Booker who dropped 26 points. With the Clippers win, they lead 1-0.

Game two was played at the Footprint Center on April 18. Not being able to keep the momentum going, the Clippers lost to the Suns 109 to 123. 

Leonard gave the Suns 31 points along with eight rebounds and seven assists. Although he gave a great performance, he was outshined by the Suns’ Booker. He had 38 points and nine assists. With the Suns win, the series stands tied 1-1.

Game three was played at the Arena in Los Angeles, Calif. on April 20. Once again, the Clippers were met with grave, disastrous news. Their star player, Leonard, suffered an injury during game two and would be unable to play for the rest of the series. It was later reported Leonard had a torn meniscus. 

Despite not having Leonard or George, the Clippers put up a fight against the Suns. The Suns managed to beat the Clippers by only five points, with an end score of 129 to 124. 

Norman Powell and Russell Westbrook gave it their all. Westbrook had 30 points, eight rebounds, and 12 assists, while Powell gave a monstrous 42 points. The Clippers bench also played extremely well, with 39 points coming from the bench. 

Once again, Booker played like the super-star he is, giving 45 points and six rebounds. Durant has 28 points along with six rebounds and five assists. While none of the other starters had amazing statlines, Chris Paul hit some much-needed clutch points in the fourth quarter. With the Suns’ win, they lead 2-1.

Game four was played at the Arena on April 22. The Suns took another win on the road beating the Clippers 100 to 112. Durant had 31 points with 11 rebounds and six assists. 

Again, Booker played very well with 30 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists. On the Clippers’ side, the only player to play well was Westbrook. He had a game high of 37 points, paired with six rebounds. With the Suns’ win, they lead 3-1

Game five was played at the Footprint Center on April 25. Game five was a win or go home game for the Clippers, as this was the final game the Suns needed to win the series 4-1. The Clippers’ starters were not able to play at the caliber they needed to with only Powell scoring more than 20 points, earning 27 points. 

Although the starters lacked, the bench played well. Three out of the four players had double-digit points. Mason Plumlee lead the bench with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Nicolas Batum was close behind with 19 points and six rebounds. 

Even though the Clippers gave a relentless effort, they couldn’t stop Booker. He played like a man possessed, leading the Suns to a win of 136 to 130. Booker had 47 points, eight rebounds and 10 assists.

With the fourth and final win, the Suns beat the Clippers 4-1 in round one of the playoffs. The loss of Kawhi and George was a great blow to the Clippers’ offense potential. The Suns were able to capitalize and gain momentum in game two. They rode that momentum to a game five win. 

Next, the Suns will face the first-seeded Denver Nuggets in round two of the playoffs.